A Follow Up on Fall Goals and Pumpkin Spice Syrup {Recipe}

A few months ago (whoa time is flying), I posted my Fall goals. I’m proud to say that I’ve ticked most items off the list! Huzzah!

We finally made it to the pumpkin farm this past weekend. Thank goodness for by-weeks because college football has been dictating our Saturdays. Boo!

Earl-Leigh Designs
Earl-Leigh Designs
Earl-Leigh Designs
The main person who grumbled about going to “take pictures in foliage” had a great time. I’m happy to report that he did not break the hobby horse.
While these aren’t the professional photos I had in mind, they’re still frame-able so I’m counting these as family photos too. Score! Besides, we just sank $1500 into the car so the hubby doesn’t see professional photos as a necessary expense at the moment. Even though I understand and agree with his logic, there was still a small part of me that was butthurt about the decision until this weekend. I’ll remove the little guy to right of us before printing. Or maybe I’ll leave the kid in the picture. He was hellbent on photobombing us. I have three to four pictures that show him getting closer and closer. Kids.
Earl-Leigh Designs
This is one of Harper’s new headbands that she thinks is “pwetty” but refuses to wear. She has some pretty stylish teddy bears now. My crafting slowed down last month because I was running out of space for my completed projects. Someone gave me the idea to just start decorating as I complete the items. Genius! I usually start putting up Christmas decor the day after Thanksgiving anyway.
Pumpkin Spice Syrup via Earl-Leigh Designs
This may not be the healthiest but we’re going to count this as one of my easy, healthy recipes. 😉
Ingredients:
1 c pumpkin puree
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice (I used a little more…obvisiously)
1/2 c water
Pure maple syrup or liquid sweetener of choice to taste
Directions:
Combine all ingredients in a saucepan on medium heat.
Bring to a boil and simmer for about 15 minutes.
Remove from heat.
Allow the syrup to cool to room temperature.
Store in a mason jar or a container that has a good seal.
Refrigerate for about 30 days.
As far the skirt thing goes…yeah…we’ll get back to that at a later date. Ha!

How are you doing with your goal list?

This post was fueled coffee, a dark chocolate, nuts & sea salt KIND bar and Two Door Cinema Club (they’re one of my faves).

Linked up at Melt in Your Mouth Mondays , Made by you Monday and Mama Moments.

WOW and The Ultimate Turkey Chili

When I picked up my phone this morning, I got a pretty awesome surprise! I’m the featured blogger for the Workout Wednesday Link Up (#WOWLinkUp) this week! YES.

Last Friday, I went to the “healthy” restaurant on campus to grab lunch because I did not have anything prepped. Big mistake. I have eaten at said restaurant on numerous occasions and have had the same meal. Whoever was working that day, needs to go back to their normal job because I was sick for days. I’m not going to get into details but it was rough. I did some light cardio over the weekend but not enough to overly exert myself.
The temperature finally dipped in South Carolina over the weekend so I made a batch of Jamie Eason’s Three Bean Turkey Chili on Sunday. I found this recipe on bodybuilding.com when I was doing her Live Fit program during the 100K Transformation Challenge and we loved it! The dish is easy to prepare, relatively inexpensive to make and full of flavor. Jamie (yeah, we’re friends in my head) is a Texan so her recipes are about health and taste.
The chili makes 12 servings and the breakdown of calories and macros are: 196 calories, 1 g fat, 20 g carbs, 24 g of muscle building protein.
Now that I’m back in good health, I’m excited for the week and the training schedule I have laid out. I plan to increase my weights today for back and biceps because I’m getting stronger.

I was tagged by Kristen last night to post “what I’m doing now” while I was leaving the gym. Look at the Fall sky, y’all! That is God and all of his glory right there! I had a trying day at the office, a pretty good workout and walked out to THAT. My day/night got even better from there! We didn’t do anything special but a random trip to the comic book shop on a weekday was a needed treat.

Two gratuitous photos from the gym last night. I did steady-state cardio on the stairmaster because I don’t believe in only doing HIIT. I like to warm-up in the 60-90 step range. And yes, I’m still wearing makeup. I know, I know! One of these days I’m going to live my life right.

What is your favorite, simple Fall meal?

This post was fueled by coffee, pumpkin yogurt with granola and Frank Sinatra Christmas tunes.

Thanks to Michelle (awesome co-worker…the only one I speak to before coffee) I’m signed up to participate in the 100 Happy Days challenge because some days I need a reminder. I’m committed to posting a picture of something that makes me happy everyday…for 100 days! I chose Instagram as my platform of choice, duh, so you’ll find the pictures there. Read more about 100 Happy Days to see if it is something you would like to be a part of.

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TIU Frisky Fall "Before" Pics {Nekkid Again, Sorry Mom}

Last week kicked off Tone It Up’s Frisky Fall Challenge!

Harper had what we thought was a cold, until the wheezing happened. A respiratory virus. Poor thing was out of it and still tried to be her cheerful, bouncy self. Except for when it was time for her breathing treatments. Yikes! That tiny girl can put up a fight. I was able to take some shoddy “before” pictures for the challenge while Mike distracted her for a few minutes. It’s amazing how soon in life we depend on mama to help us feel better!

 

I took a quick snapshot of my midsection the next morning to show y’all what I’m working with. Ha! Seriously, I wanted to show that I have all of the glorious marks of motherhood. Some women get the stripes and loose skin, some don’t. You can see that I fall into the last category. They don’t phase me…anymore. I won’t lie and say that I always wore them with pride. I didn’t. I hated them. Loved my daughter and had no regrets about having her. I was just not a fan of the way things shifted after having her. It wasn’t until I started lifting and regaining confidence in myself as a woman (not just a mom), that I noticed the stripes less. The loose skin started tightening up and now I only notice it when I’m leaning forward.

My goals throughout the Frisky Fall challenge are to:
Train my midsection- I hate, hate, hate doing ab work.
Continue my booty building.
Drink less alcohol- I’m not throwing them back every night but I discovered Moscow Mules. Heaven HELP ME that drink is too good. It’s refreshing, easy and inexpensive to make. Let’s not forgot to mention the seasonal drinks that I want to try like this Pumpkin Spice Margarita. Just pour it down my throat please and thank you.

Have you ever had a Moscow Mule? What’s your favorite cocktail/mocktail of the moment?

This post was fueled by H2O, shrimp with mixed veggies and Explosions In The Sky.

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Pumpkin Spice Smoothie Recipe {Vegan-Friendly}

It isn’t technically fall but it’s close enough for me to start indulging in all things pumpkin! I wanted a seasonal drink that wasn’t caffeinated because Harper would be drinking it too. After looking through my cabinets and fridge, I whipped up a Pumpkin Spice Smoothie. Depending on what you have at home, you could make this drink vegan-friendly. BAM!

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie via Earl-Leigh Designs

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups milk (I used plain almond)
1 1/2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice- you could use more to bring out the flavor
1/2 cup pumpkin
1 oz cream cheese- or dairy free yogurt
Vanilla extract
Honey or sweetener of choice
Graham crackers (optional)

Directions:
Blend all ingredients.
Drink!

Special Note:
This is a really creamy smoothie. Add more milk if you desire a thinner consistency.

Pumpkin Spice Smoothie via Earl-Leigh Designs

I need to hit up Bath & Body Works for some new candles! I only have two left from last year and they have a Vanilla Pumpkin Marshmallow one that I NEED.

What are you sipping on? 

This post was fueled by Starbucks, Foo Fighters and soup!